I’m somewhat of a collector — a pack rat — and I sometimes keep old magazines and newspapers a little bit too long, particularly issues with stories I find interesting.

The Aug. 12, 1991 edition of Time Magazine has survived at least one move, from my last apartment in Richmond to my hometown, and it has survived through numerous house cleanings.

I dug it out this week and found one story in that issue still totally relevant today.

“Busybodies and Crybabies, What’s Happening to the American Character?” the headline proclaims.

What’s happening, in my humble opinion, is lack of respect of other people’s opinions and lack of respect as a whole.

A guest on a talk show said something this week I totally agree with.

She recalled the relationship between President Ronald Reagan, a conservative Republican, and Thomas “Tip” O’Neill, a liberal Democrat from Boston and 47th Speaker of the House of Representatives.

Reagan and O’Neill were fierce political opponents and clashed on policy constantly while Reagan was in office.

However, after Reagan was shot in a failed assassination attempt on March 30, 1981, one of the first people at his side to pray for his recovery was Tip O’Neill.

There are published reports of restaurant customers being assailed simply because of their political beliefs and free speech being curtailed on college campuses because of the efforts of loud mouth activists.

I recall the novel, “1984,” by George Orwell, that warned against a world governed by propaganda, surveillance and censorship.

Shouting down an adversary seems to be the norm nowadays, rather than finding middle ground, and a sense of entitlement is pervasive everywhere.

Because a group of people doesn’t like something, everyone has to cow-tow to them because of “political correctness.”

Be careful of what others “think you think” and be aware of the thought police that look more into the lives of others than they do their own.

As I’ve gotten older, I’ve become more of a realist than an optimist, and that’s more a matter of survival than anything.

Just do the best you can and let the chips fall where they may.

Doug Ford reports for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact him at dford@gazettevirginian.com.

Doug Ford covers news and sports for The Gazette-Virginian. Contact him at dford@gazettevirginian.com.